Inflammatory and immune mediated disorders are risk factors for arterial and venous thromboembolism. Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) confer an even greater risk of thromboembolic events than other inflammatory conditions. It has been shown that IBD patients display defective intestinal barrier functions. Thus, pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) coming from the intestinal bacterial burden might reach systemic circulation and activate innate immunity receptors on endothelial cells and platelets, promoting a procoagulative state. Aim of the study was to test this hypothesis, correlating the presence of circulating PAMPs with the activation of innate immune system and the activation of the coagulatory cascade in IBD patients. Specifically, we studied lipopolysaccharide (LPS), Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2, TLR4, and markers of activated coagulation (i.e., D-Dimer and prothrombin fragment F1 + 2) in the serum and plasma of IBD patients. We found that LPS levels are increased in IBD and correlate with TLR4 concentrations; although a mild correlation between LPS and CRP levels was detected, clinical disease activity does not appear to influence circulating LPS. Instead, serum LPS correlates with both D-Dimer and F1 + 2 measurements. Taken together, our data support the role of an impairment of intestinal barrier in triggering the activation of the coagulatory cascade in IBD.
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